May 26th, 2018

Business Beat: Connect, support, influence

By Medicine Hat News on May 16, 2018.

While our Chamber has been around since the year 1900, many people may still not be aware of what our Chamber of Commerce does.

Our member-based organization has always represented “the voice” of the business community and has always stood for promoting business, monitoring government and championing managed growth in the local economy. So what does that mean?

It really comes down to three simple elements; it’s about connecting, supporting and influencing.

What most people may not be aware of is that we are the largest and most influential business network, locally, provincially and nationally, as we represent over 800 members within our region, expanding our network each and every day. We are also aligned with the Alberta Chambers of Commerce, which represents more than 25,000 businesses provincially and the Canadian Chambers of Commerce, which represents more than 200,000 businesses nationally. With this strength locally, provincially and nationally, the Chamber network works together to provide connections, benefits and support, while also sharing a common and influential voice to shape policy and government decisions. Everything we work on is done so that we can make an impact and a difference to businesses in our region.

By connecting with businesses and member organizations, we are continually building networks and professional connections, while providing avenues for our members to connect and network with others. Our high-calibre events focus on business recognition, regulatory and government impact and networking, providing multiple avenues for those that wish to grow their network by making these face to face connections at these events. It also provides an avenue for us to recognize business success and achievements, while also providing other avenues for the business voice to be heard by government. We also seek to connect our members with our partner organizations for various supports and professional development opportunities.

We are able to support our members by championing growth in our local economy through our advocacy work, promoting our members through various marketing avenues and leveraging our network of suppliers to provide business solutions and cost savings. We also support our members by providing relevant and timely business information and resources on everything from grants and funding to employment standards and various government legislative and regulatory changes that will have an impact on the day to day operations.

The other key element is our influence. Because of the breadth of our network, in both the industries we represent and the number of member organizations on a municipal, provincial and federal level, we can represent a common and unified voice and ensure that the concerns of our members are heard. We use this impact to work with government towards viable solutions that can make a difference and have a collective impact for our region.

Why do we do this? Because we recognize that the most valuable resource for our members is their time. It’s the one thing people don’t have enough of and it’s not necessarily something you can obtain more of. When you partner with an organization that streamlines your opportunities and information to save you time, money, resources, while also influencing decisions that have a direct impact on you, the connections, support and influence we offer start to make a bit more sense. We can partner with you to connect you with other businesses to expand your network; we can help provide you with various supports and tools that you may not have had the time to look into yourself and we can make sure your voice is represented when you don’t have the time to fight for what is fair and reasonable.

We are here to help stimulate a strengthened and vibrant economy in our region through our connections, support and influence and we want to show our businesses that we are genuinely here to help, that we sincerely want to make a difference, and we here to listen and connect with you.

We invite you to connect with us online at http://www.medicinehatchamber.com and check out our benefits, our business resources, our advocacy initiatives, our events and our communications. We also encourage you to support the Chamber network of business and organizations within our community that are investing to make a difference, while also gaining benefits and support for their business.

We encourage you to connect with us online, stop by our office at 413 Sixth Ave. SE or join us at our open house on June 1 from 3-7 p.m. We look forward to meeting you.

Lisa Kowalchuk is the executive director of the Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce. For more information on this column or the Chamber, contact 403-527-5214.

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